Monday, March 3, 2014

Fighting the Demons--A Letter To My Son

Oh, my little blonde love...

You've come so far.  You've learned to talk, to express your wants and needs. You've learned to navigate the world successfully, even though not everyone shares your passions or communication style. You are always yourself, with no regard for what others think. You make everyone around you smile every single day. You light up any room that you're in. Everyone loves you wholeheartedly and unconditionally.

But I see it. I see it every single time.  The anxiety that lurks behind your gorgeous blue eyes.  The worries, the fixations about things that are out of your control.  The fears that may seem absurd to other people, the ones that you cannot let go of, no matter how much comforting that I give. The ones that haunt you every single day. I see them, and they hurt me so much, like an unexpected blow to the stomach.

Scraped knees and elbows, busted lips, ear infections and stuffy noses. I can make all of those things better with a hug and a kiss, medicine and band-aids and love. But there's no mom super-power, nothing in my bag of tricks that can help you with overcoming your fears and anxieties. They render me helpless and leave me feeling wrecked and tired and so incredibly sorry for what you go through each day.

Last night, as you lay in bed, crying hundreds of hot tears, worrying about whether the power was going to go out, I did what I could. I kissed each and every tear, and each kiss was a wish. A wish that things would get easier for you. A wish that you would become strong enough to overcome the worry. A wish that my love, as immeasurable as it is, would be enough to make it better.  I covered your little face, head with kisses and pretended that each one was like a band-aid on an open wound that would protect and heal. I wiped tears with my fingers and tried to imagine that my hands were creating an invincible bubble around you, so that nothing could hurt you or scare you again. As you started to calm and the sniffles became fewer and fewer, I squeezed your hand and made promises that I knew I couldn't necessarily keep--that the power would most definitely not go out. That the lights wouldn't blink. You settled in, and I felt guilty but satisfied, knowing that just for that moment, you were comforted and that the anxieties had abated for the night.

I walked back to my bed and said a silent prayer for the electricity to stay on, so that you could get a good night's sleep.

I love you, baby boy. And I will continue to do everything I can to help you learn to manage the fears and anxieties that plague your every day living. I will never stop fighting for your happiness.


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